Posted On: 09/20/18 10:00 AM
Class AAAA should be uber-competitive this winter as there is a great deal of depth and talent spread all over the state. Here are some of the top duos worth watching during the 2018-19 season:
Prior Lake: Not often do people think of a pair of big men when they hear ‘dynamic duo’ but that’s what the Lakers have in D1 big men Dawson Garcia and Robert Jones. Garcia enters his third year as a starter despite being just a junior and averaged better 20 points per game as a sophomore. Jones put up 13-plus points per game and added to his expanding offensive game this summer.
Wayzata: Here’s a dynamic backcourt duo. Jacob Beeninga and Luke Paulson lead a terrific pack of guards for the Spartans and conduct a well-oiled machine of an offense. Beeninga put up 20 points per game last year and is one of the best individual shot-makers in the state while Paulson (12 points per game) has deep range and a savvy floor game.
White Bear Lake: The Bears won 15 games a year ago and could win even more this winter thanks to a terrific pairing of Jeremy Beckler and Sam Schwartz. Beckler averaged better than 19 points and seven rebounds while Schwartz put up just less than 17 and 7.5 rebounds.
Hopkins: The Royals should be considered one of the favorites to win the state title next season and the duo of Zeke Nnaji and Kerwin Walton. Both guys were double figure scorers a year ago and had monster summers with their respective AAU teams. It wouldn’t be surprising to see the two combine to average nearly 40 points per game next season.
Park of Cottage Grove: The Wolfpack won just six games last season but there’s hope for a big step forward this year. The optimism starts with Domenik Block and Charlie Gorres — one of the best duos in the Suburban East Conference. Gorres averaged 20 points, 10 rebounds and five assists before missing the final handful of games while Block put up 17.5 points and four rebounds.
Cambridge-Isanti: The Bluejackets should be the favorite in Section 7AAAA this winter thanks to a host of returning talent. The duo of Henry Abraham and Luke Malamisuro should be good enough to get them a lot of wins in the Mississippi 8 as well. Abraham averaged better than 20 points a night as a sophomore while Malamisuro put up 13.6 per night. The two combined to knock down more than 160 3-pointers.
Shakopee: The Sabres should be much improved this year and could be a surprise team in Section 2AAAA. Charles Kotana and Caleb Druvenga give the Sabres one of the best duos in the state as both were incredibly productive as just sophomores last season. Katona averaged 19 points, eight rebounds and four assists. He eclipsed the 20-point mark 12 times. Druvenga was terrific as well, averaging 15 points and knocking down more than 80 triples.